Friday, August 27, 2010

Back to School~2010

The boys started back to school this week! 
It's been a bit of a funky summer for us~ so I wasn't quite ready for Summer Break to be over...
Until the last 2 which point I was seriously considering sending both of them to Boarding School. 
(I know they look all nice and innocent in this picture, do not be fooled!)
Spencer started High School this year.  He was a bit nervous, though he wouldn't admit it.  Nervous = Ornery at our house.  Ornery kids make for an ornery mom.  Just sayin'.  There has been a lot of weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth...and that was just me!
We spent several days at the HS getting registration completed.  I went to Sophomore orientation with him.  It was mostly a big pep rally.
He doesn't know the school song yet, so I've been having lots of fun singing my school song.
Last night, I was singing to them (which was not appreciated) and we were laughing about this story:

When Emily was in 9th grade, Spanish Fork HS was playing Payson HS (my Alma mater).  She and some friends were going to the game...she liked to talk about how "way better" her school was than mine! 
Imagine her surprise when she came home from school with her friends, and I had green posters on the front door and all over the house!  "Lion's Rule, Don's Drool",  "Lion Pride" etc.  I also had painted a green lion's paw on my cheek!  Had to show my school spirit!!!  We laugh about it now, but at the time she was not happy with me! 
The highlight of the afternoon was when I delighted them by singing my school fight song!

"We are a band of soldiers true,
Our armor is the strength of youth!
Our weapons are not muskets blue,
But shining darts of thought and truth, and truth.
Our enemy is ignorance,
A strong and sullen foe.
But with increasing diligence,
To victory we will surely go!

We are marching, we are marching,
We are marching on to victory every day!
Come and join us, come and join us,
Come and help us put the battle in array. ARRAY!
We will conquer, we will conquer,
Though our foe's the worst the world has ever seen!
Our war cry is the school,
Our hope's the Golden Rule.
And our colors are the silver and the green!" 

Do you remember your HS fight song? 
(P.S. Emily...Lions are still way better than Dons!)

See the expression on this boy's face?  I think it pretty much sums up the last 2 weeks around here!  Did I mention everyone has been pretty ornery?   
Shane is a 4th grader this year.  I seem to remember being much older in 4th grade!  These 4th graders all look pretty young to me!

This may be a forced smile.  He is much happier now that he has a couple days under his belt.  He was nervous to go back to school too! Nervous = Ornery...right?  Right!!! 
Happy Back to School Week!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Amy's Yummy Breadsticks

Oh my, these are so yummy!  I've made them about 4 times in the last couple of weeks. 

1 1/2 cups warm water
1/4 tsp salt
1 Tbs. yeast
2 Tbs. sugar
3 1/2 cups flour

Layer ingredients in bread machine in the order listed. Set on dough setting.  (I don't have a bread machine, I just throw all the ingredients in my Kitchen Aid and mix them up until the dough forms a ball, sort of, and is smooth and elastic)
When complete, spread in greased cookie sheet and slice lines.  Let rise while mixing topping.
(I let them rise about 15 minutes or so)

1/4 cup melted butter
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese (I use the real stuff)
1/4 tsp parsley flakes
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 tsp. garlic salt

Mix well and spread over dough.
Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.

My notes:
Dough is on the sticky side. Wetting your hands will help you spread the dough easier.
I use a little bit smaller cookie sheet rather than my big sheet cake pans. 
I haven't tried these with the powdered Parmesan (you know, in the green bottle) but I think it would probably work okay too.
Don't be afraid of the mayonnaise...and DO NOT use Miracle Whip...just sayin'.
For a short cut, you could use the topping and spread on slices of French Bread. 
Did I mention these are really, really yummy? 

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Brain Injury Rehabilitation

This video is a news piece that was done about Kuna Williams, a friend of ours from Arizona.  He is a brain injury survivor too.  We met him and his family at a support group for young adult TBI survivors and their families.  He and Curtis attended the same rehabilitation program, Center for Transitional Neurorehabilitation (CTN).  Dr. Klonoff  is the director and she and her staff are incredible at what they do.  We feel so fortunate that we were able to attend therapy at CTN.
Kuna and Dr. Klonoff did a great job with this interview!

Holistic Approach to Brain Injury Recovery

Monday, August 9, 2010

Blond Toffee Brownies

I've been on somewhat of a baking kick lately.
Not that anyone is complaining. 
Well, maybe just a little because baking you know, heats up the house & it's summer and all...
But other than that, yeah no complaining. 

Perhaps the baking binge is because I recently acquired this:

Oooh, baby! I have been coveting   wanting one of these for a long, long time!
When we moved back to Utah...we were over at Amy & Gary's and I noticed she had a Kitchen Aid. 
I actually said to Rick; "When did Amy get a Kitchen Aid?  No Fair!".  I was J-E-A-L-O-U-S!!! 
I got over it...really, I did! 
But...on Mother's Day this year, Rick and Emily had a huge surprise for me! 
I cried when I unwrapped it!  It was awesome!!!
Then I got sick before I could even use now I guess I'm trying to catch up!!! 
And I have been putting it to good use, that's for sure.

Now, for the recipe (finally).
I used to make these years ago, but had forgotten about them...A while back I remembered that I used to have a toffee brownie recipe...but I couldn't find it anywhere.  I was pretty sure I had gotten the recipe off of a package of toffee bits...but search as I might, I couldn't find it.
Then, just a few days ago...I remembered that the recipe was from a magazine! Aren't our brains wonderful?  I went searching through my collection of cooking magazines and there it was!!! I knew it was the right recipe because I had written some notes on it. 
Okay, so NOW, here is the recipe (gees, get to the recipe already, would ya?)

Blond Toffee Brownies

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
2 tsps. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup English Toffee bits

In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Beat in vanilla.  Combine the flour, baking powder and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture. Stir in toffee bits.
Batter will be thick. Spread evenly into a greased 9x13x2 in baking pan.  Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.  Cool. Cut into bars to serve.

My notes:
The bars are thin, which is probably good because they are very rich!  The toffee melts, so they are also pretty gooey...Next time I make them, I'm going to use the toffee bits that have the chocolate.  Shane told me these are really good, but he thinks they need just a little chocolate. 

Friday, August 6, 2010

Odds and Ends July Edition

First off, thank you, thank you, thank you for all your kind words when Amy passed away.  Thanks for reading her blog...and for reading mine too! 

Next:  I am feeling much better after my 2 month bout with Labyrinthitis/Vertigo. I still have an "episode" of dizziness once in a while, but otherwise am finally pretty much back to normal.  I will say, it lasted much longer than I had hoped!!!  Nasty, nasty stuff.

Some more pictures of Summer Evening Fun at Strawberry

This time it was just Shane, Rick and me.  The guys caught 8 or so fish this trip.  They were all small, so no pictures.  They all were released back into the reservoir.